Foo Fighters BrittanyCicchese, CassieCarlson, George Rodriguez, Jacob Hayes, Vitor Milagres
History The FounderoftheFooFighters, Dave Grohl, waspreviouslythedrummer for theband Nirvana. He wouldwritehisownsongsbutwasintimidatedby Kurt Cobain, sohedidnot show theband. AfterCobain’sdeath, Nirvana disbandedandGrohl foundanopportunityto spread allthesongshehadwritten.
“One man band” He went to a studio to record all thesongs he had written He sang and played every instrumenton the recordings He recorded the songs under the nameof Foo Fighters
Formation Nate Mendel (bassist) and William Goldsmith (drummer) were disbanded from the group Sunny Day Real Estate and decided to join Grohl Pat Smear had been a touring guitarist for Nirvana and also decided to join him However, the major influences of the band came from Grohl
Debut Album Live debut on 02/23/1995 First album, Foo Fighters, in July
Second Album In 1966, they recorded their second album, The Colour and the Shape, Grohl wrote all the songs, however, the band played the instruments this time
Replacement (drums) Grohl did not like the sound of the drums and decided to re-record the drums himself. Goldsmith felt hurt and decided to leave the band Taylor Hawkins, a drummer for Alanis Morissette, took his place.
Replacement (guitar) Pat Smear decided to leave the band and a childhood friend of Grohl’s, Franz Stahl, decided to replacehim
Trio However, Stahl and Grohl’s ideas in songwriting did not match and Grohl fired him The trio was Grohl, Hawkins and Mendel
Third Album The album There Is Nothing Left to Lose, gave them their first single on the Billboard Hot 100
Chris Shiflett Chris Shiflett, guitarist, joined the band
Fourth Album When recording their fourth album, disagreements and debates about it made them decide to take a short break from the band. However, after reuniting to play at the Coachella festival, they got back togetherand recorded their fourth album, One by One
Fifth album They built a recording studio, Studio 606 West, and recorded their fifth album, In Your Honor
Sixth album • In 2007, they recorded their sixth album, Echoes, Silence, Patience and Grace • The album was nominated for five Grammy and won two of them • Best Rock Album • Best Hard Rock Performance for the single, “The Pretender” • Pat Smear rejoined them
Seventh Album • In 2011, they released Wasting Light, which was recorded in Grohl’s garage, using only analog equipment • This album won five out of six Grammy nominations: • Best Hard Rock/metal performance • Best Long Form Music Video • Best Rock Album • Best Rock Performance • Best Rock Song • Number one album on the Billboard 200
Current Members Dave Grohl – Lead Vocals, rhythm and lead guitar Nate Mendel – Bass guitar Taylor Hawkins – Drums and background vocals Chris Shiflett – Lead guitar and background vocals Pat Smear – Rhythm guitar and background vocals
Contemporary Bands (Nirvana) • Nirvana is the band that is the most similar to Foo Fighters • They were the epitome of angst-ridden lyrics and grunge bands • In the beginning of Grohl’s success, Cobain overheard him working on a song and joined him. The band released this song, titled “Marigold”, the only Nirvana song which feats Grohl on lead vocals. • When Grohl went to Foo Fighters, he covered the song • Many of their songs focus on social issues • “Smells Like Teen Spirit”: general apathy of the generation • “Breed”: being trapped in middle class America
Contemporary Bands (Korn) • Alternative metal sound • They became known after the grunge era • Their songs also focus on society • “Falling Away from Meaning”: violence and abuse and how this is a big issue on their time. • It is believed that many of their songs drove the students to shoot up their schools. However, they were in fact promoting the prevention of abuse and violence
Influences (John Bonham) Grohl drew a lot of inspiration and influence from the drummer John Bonham, from Led Zeppelin This was proved after Grohl got a tattoo of John’s three circle ring
Influences (9:30 Club) The 9:30 Club in DC has also influenced Grohl’s career He once said: “"I went to the 9:30 club hundreds of times. I was always so excited to get there, and I was always bummed when it closed. I spent my teenage years at the club and saw some shows that changed my life.” – Dave Grohl
Other influences • These quotes show other bands that have influenced: • “I always felt fortunate to have been in that band (Nirvana). I've always felt it was incredibly unfortunate how it ended. But I know that if it weren't for that band, I wouldn't be here right now” – Dave Grohl • “It wasn't until I got the Beatles albums that I really fell in love with rock 'n' roll. I learned how to play drums from listening to Led Zeppelin” – Dave Grohl
Influences on other people After Foo Fighters received the Grammy for their song “Walk”, Grohl’s speech struck a chord with a lot of musicians and listeners: “Rather than go to the best studio in the world. Rather than use all the fanciest computers, we made this one in my garage, with some microphones and a tape machine”. He goes on to say that “the human element of making music is the most important. It’s not about what goes on in a computer. It’s about what goes on in here” (Grohl finishes his speech pointing at his heart and at his brain). His words about “being a human being” has amazed other bands and, no doubt, some of them are now more likely to drift in that direction.
Music Analysis (“Best of You”) • “Best of You” (2005) - Highest charting single in the US Hot 100 (#18), the UK (#4), and Australia (#5). Nominated for the Grammy for Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance by a Group or Duo Vocals in 2006 • Song link: • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_L4Rixya64
Music Analysis (“Best of You”) • Texture: • Song starts off monophonic for a few seconds • Instrumental kicks in and it becomes homophony melody-and-accompaniment • Vocal Dynamics get louder after the first verse and chorus • Meter: • Duple meter
Music Analysis (“Best of You”) • Beat Subdivision: • Quadruple subdivision • Emphasis on back beat (2 and 4) • Form: • AAAA in the verses • AABCDA in the chorus
Music Analysis (“Best of You”) • Instrumentation • Song starts off with one guitar playing • Drums and second guitar come in after the first two stanzas • Instrumental break after the chorus (fourth stanza in lyrics) with emphasis on the rhythm guitar • After second chorus (fifth stanza), it goes back into just a guitar playing a melody • Ends with a drum breakdown
Other Notable Songs These two songs are their other two best selling ones, from different periods of their career. “Learn to Fly” (1999) - Second highest charting single on the Billboard 100 (#19), nominated for the Grammy for Best Rock Performance by a Group or Duo Vocals in 2001. “Walk” (2011) - The third song of three consecutive #1s in Billboard’s Rock charts. Also reached number one in the Mainstream Rock and Alternative charts. Won two Grammys for Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance by a Group or Duo.
Conclusion In a society where rock music is losing out to pop and rap music in popularity, the Foo Fighters are a band that has managed to keep rock music relevant and popular. They are an influential group in rock music and will continue to help define the shape that modern rock music will take in the future.
References Keyes, J. D. (2001). Foo fighters. Rolling Stone, Retrieved from http://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/foo-fighters/biography Erlewine, S. (n.d.). Foo fighters: biography. Retrieved from http://www.allmusic.com/artist/foo-fighters-mn0000184043 Roberts, M. (1998, December 3). Bring back that sunny day. New Times Miami. Retrieved from http://www.miaminewtimes.com/1998-12-03/music/bring-back-that-sunny-day X-clusive: foo fighters vs president george w bush. (2005, May 11). Retrieved from http://www.xfm.co.uk/news/2005/x-clusive-foo-fighters-vs-president-george-w-bush DiPerna, A. (1997). Absolutely foobulous. Guitar World. Retrieved from http://www.fooarchive.com/features/guitarworld.htm The immortals – the greatest artists of all time: 14) led zeppelin. (n.d.) Rolling Stone. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2010/04/16/AR2010041602110.html Dave grohl biography. (2009). Drummerworld. Retreivedfromhttp://www.drummerworld.com/drummers/Dave_Grohl.html
References Welcome to the club: an oral history of d.c’s 9:30 club on its 30thanniversary. (2010, April 18). The Washington Post. Retrieved fromhttp://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2010/04/16/AR2010041602110.html Marigold by Nirvana. (n.d.). Retrieved fromhttp://www.songfactss.com/detail.php?id4157 Azzerrad, M. (1993). Come as you are: the story of nirvana. (p. 148). New York: Doubleday. 10 questions for davegrohl. (2009, December 14). Time Magazine.Retrieved from http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1945348,00.html#ixzz1wfRyAiZG Foo Fighters. In Your Honor. [S.I.]: Sony Music, 2005. Print. Foo Fighters. Greatest Hits. Hal Leonard Corporation, 2010. Print. Foo Fighters. Wasting Light. Hal Leonard Corporation, 2010. Print. Apter, J. (2008). The Dave Grohl story: Nirvana – Foo Fighters. London: Music Group Sales McKinley, J. (2012, February 13). A prayer, a celebration, and a coronation. New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/13/arts/music/grammys-are-handed-out-in-los-angeles.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all